Danielson: A Family Movie (or, Make a Joyful Noise Here) Image

Mixed or average reviews - based on 6 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: Danielson: a Family Movie is a documentary about unbridled creativity vs. accessibility, Christian faith vs. popular culture, underground music vs. survival, and family vs. individuality. The film follows Daniel Smith, an eccentric musician and visual artist, as he leads his four siblings and best friend Chris to indie-rock stardom. (Creative Arson Productions) Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 6
  2. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. 70
    Shot on digital and layered with animated segments, performance footage and clips from Smith family home movies, Family Movie unfolds with a gentle, justified confidence in the power of its subject.
  2. Reviewed by: Michael Ordona
    Aronson's film is a fond portrait, loaded with bizarre, haunting music and Smith's off-kilter inspirations.
  3. Reviewed by: Monica Kendrick
    Nonfans may be put off by its relative lack of dramatic tension and soft-focus analog video.
  4. Reviewed by: Dennis Harvey
    There is an undeniable quirky appeal to the creative world of Daniel Smith, though those who hope a behind-the-scenes look will explain his motivation or personality won't find the enigma resolved here.
  5. One of the strangest things about J.L. Aronson's often fascinating film is the presence of Sufjan Stevens, who recently has become a star in his own right, as Smith's bandmate and protégé. One can only wonder what Stevens, who possesses a pleasant voice and a solid grasp of song craft, found in such a mentor.
  6. This being a film review, the relevant question is whether J L Aronson's documentary about Danielson is worth watching. The answer, for about two-thirds of it, is yes. Though ultimately, alas, the movie has a little too much Danielson in it.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. [Anonymous]
    Dec 15, 2006
    Its not a perfect film, but it is a lovely portrait of a truly singular artist whose music comes from the heart, and could only be made by him. It is also interesting comparing Danielson's trajectory with that of Sufjan Stevens, who at one point toured with Danielson Famile. Expand